Workshops 2019

Days 2 and 3 (Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 September)

There will be six workshops, each taking place over two days, Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 September. Workshop participants should attend both days. Participants will take part in one workshop and should state their first, second and third choices on the registration form. We will do our best to place you in your first choice but this may not be possible for everyone if some workshops are oversubscribed.

Information about what participants should bring with them, e.g. sewing kit, will be sent closer to the symposium dates.

Workshop sessions with a tutor will take place from 9.30am for 10.00am, to 5.30/6.00pm, and participants will be be able to experiment with materials.


Workshop tutor: Kunza

Kunza is a corset designer and maker who trained with Vivienne Westwood. Her work has been seen on Paris and Milan catwalks and in historical movies and TV dramas such as Downton Abbey, The Duchess, Pride and Prejudice, and Poldark amongst many others.

The corset workshop will give an introduction in the history, design and making of corsets, from stays to Edwardian corsets to girdles, looking at how these create the silhouette in different eras.

Participants will be able to compare different materials that were used in the past with what is used today for film (including various busk types and boning – wood, whale bones, metal and plastic) and also embellishments such as corset flossing for decoration as well as functionality.

An authentic Victorian corset pattern will be available to copy during the workshop and participants will use hand sewing as well as machines techniques to recreate a historical corset.

Embroidery Embellishment

Workshop tutor: Michele Carragher

Michele Carragher is a London-based hand embroiderer and Illustrator.  After attending the London College of Fashion where she studied fashion design, Michele worked in textile conservation, which has proven invaluable to her embroidery work on costumes for film and TV.  Michele worked as a general costume assistant until she drifted towards the embroidery and embellishment of costumes.  Her first role as principal costume embroiderer was on the HBO/C4 mini series Elizabeth I starring Dame Helen Mirren.  She has created hand embroidery, embellishment or textile art for various productions such as Stardust, Prince of Persia, Peaky Blinders, Ali and Nino, Queen of the Desert, Assassin’s Creed, The Crown season one, and most notably Game of Thrones with the costume designer Michele Clapton.  

The workshop will be structured around creating the stumpwork beetle pictured, which will give an insight into the variety and layering of materials Michele uses to create the desired look for a particular piece. Materials and a stage by stage guide will be supplied. Michele will bring samples of her embroidery work and notebooks showing progression for participants to have a closer look at, ask questions and understand the different approaches to various projects that she has undertaken.


Workshop tutor: Sean Barrett

Sean Barrett is an experienced theatrical milliner. He trained at Wimbledon School of Art and works in film, television and theatre. He has designed and made hats for many productions and has created hats for Johnny Depp.

In the millinery workshop participants will learn how to design and trim hats with the materials supplied.

Pattern Cutting

Workshop tutor: Toni Bate

Toni currently works at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA) where she has been developing the new MA Costume Making programme alongside her role as Wardrobe Supervisor. Prior to this she was a Costume Construction lecturer on the unique Costume with Textiles BA (Hons) degree at the University of Huddersfield and other education roles have included Specialist Costume Technician at Edge Hill University, Costume Lecturer at Liverpool Community College and Costume Designer and Wardrobe Supervisor at Arden School of Theatre in Manchester. Since graduating from Liverpool’s prestigious Mabel Fletcher course in 1994 Toni has also worked as a costume maker, tailor and wardrobe supervisor for theatre, film and television.

Toni’s workshop will explore bespoke pattern cutting for women’s period costume through both flat pattern drafting and cutting on the stand techniques. Skills necessary for successful design interpretation will be discussed and demonstrated and participants will interpret various historical silhouettes by adapting basic blocks, manipulating patterns and draping.

Period Tailoring

Workshop tutor: Vicky Salway

Vicky Salway has worked in the TV and film industry for 25 years and as well as supervising on costume teams she has maintained her skills in tailoring alongside her filming career. She has worked at York Theatre Royal, the Crucible in Sheffield and at the Royal Opera House, on the feature film Belle and as costume supervisor on episodes of the TV series The Living and the Dead. In addition, her work has appeared at the Tower of London, the Victoria and Albert Museum, Hampton Court Palace and the Palace Stables, Armagh.

Vicky has made costumes for the companies Cosprop and Past Pleasures among many others.

In her workshop Vicky will be teaching how to take a pattern from a period waistcoat and then participants will be assisted in the stages of making that garment themselves, involving numerous tailoring techniques. Pressing, an essential part of tailoring, will also be taught.

Renaissance Knitting

Workshop tutor: Sarah Shepherd

After having spent over a decade as a textile artist and costumier, Sarah began focusing on knitwear exclusively. She now works in film, television and for exhibitions, designing and creating knitwear. She enjoys combining the look of hand knitting and the speed of machine knitting to create costume pieces.

In the workshop you will learn how to turn a Renaissance sock heel using hand knitting on circular needles and be inspired by silk “damask” knitting examples to create your own designs to work on a domestic punch card knitting machine.